Arsenal ace sees bright future for ex-Sunderland striker

Beth Mead
Beth Mead
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Young striker Beth Mead has a magic touch in front of goal, according to new Arsenal team-mate Danielle van de Donk.

The prolific ex-Sunderland striker signed for the Gunners in January, and scored on her competitive debut in Arsenal’s 10-0 SSE Women’s FA Cup demolition of local rivals Tottenham Hotspur.

Van de Donk was named the SSE Women’s FA Cup player of the fifth round for her performance in the Tottenham clash after her hat-trick, although the Gunners slipped out of the competition at the quarter-final stage to Birmingham last Sunday.

But with the FA WSL Spring Series set to begin next month, Van de Donk is excited to watch 21-year-old Mead’s progression.

“I think Beth is amazing,” said Netherlands international van de Donk.

“She’s incredible, she’s a real out-and-out striker.

“Things have gone really well for her so far. She’s a really good striker – it seems like everything she hits goes into the net.

“She’s young and fresh and she can be hard on herself, which can be a good thing.

“I think she’s going to be on top of her game for the league and the Spring Series.”

Mead averaged a goal a game during six years with Sunderland, with an impressive 77 strikes in 78 matches, and is an established member of the England under-23 side.

However, she is unlikely to get a call-up to the senior side for the UEFA Women’s Euro 2017 in the Netherlands in the summer where England have been drawn to face Scotland, Spain and Portugal in Group D. There is an outside chance of a standby place for Mead.

The Dutch are in Group A and van de Donk admitted she would love a potential match-up between the two sides later in the tournament.

“It’s amazing, I’m buzzing,” she said. “We’ve both got chances. You don’t necessarily have to be the best team to win. Anything can happen.”

Tickets are now on sale for the SSE Women’s FA Cup Final on Saturday 13th May at Wembley Stadium connected by EE. For the second consecutive year, kids go free to the final. Adult tickets cost £15 and can be purchased at https://ticketing.thefa.com/